Cuadro de Jotas – Music From Sunny Spain (1958)

FrontCover1The music of Spain has a long history and has played an important role in the development of Western music and has greatly influenced Latin American music. Spanish music is often associated with traditional styles such as flamenco and classical guitar. While these forms of music are common, there are many different traditional musical and dance styles across the regions. For example, music from the north-west regions is heavily reliant on bagpipes, the jota is widespread in the centre and north of the country, and flamenco originated in the south. Spanish music played a notable part in the early developments of western classical music, from the 15th through the early 17th century. The breadth of musical innovation can be seen in composers like Tomás Luis de Victoria, styles like the zarzuela of Spanish opera, the ballet of Manuel de Falla, and the classical guitar music of Francisco Tárrega.

The jota (Spanish: [ˈxota]; Catalan: [ˈdʒɔta]; Aragonese: hota [ˈxota] or ixota [iˈʃota]; Asturian: xota [ˈʃota]; Galician: xota [ˈʃɔta]; old Spanish spelling: xota[1]) is a genre of music and the associated dance known throughout Spain, most likely originating in Aragon. It varies by region, having a characteristic form in Aragon (where it is the most important[1]), Catalonia, Castile, Navarre, Cantabria, Asturias, Galicia, La Rioja, Murcia and Eastern Andalusia. Being a visual representation, the jota is danced and sung accompanied by castanets, and the interpreters tend to wear regional costumes. In Valencia, the jota was once danced during interment ceremonies.

Man and woman dancing Jota aragonesa, traditional Spanish dance. Created by Gustave Dore, published on Le Tour Du Monde, Paris, 1867

The jota tends to have a 3/4 rhythm, although some authors maintain that the 6/8 is better adapted to the poetic and choreographic structure. For their interpretation, guitars, bandurrias, lutes, dulzaina, and drums are used in the Castilian style, while the Galicians use bagpipes, drums, and bombos. Theatrical versions are sung and danced with regional costumes and castanets, though such things are not used when dancing the jota in less formal settings. The content of the songs is quite diverse, from patriotism to religion to sexual exploits. In addition to this, the songs also have the effect of helping to generate a sense of local identity and cohesion.

The steps have an appearance not unlike that of the waltz, though in the case of the jota, there is much more variation. Furthermore, the lyrics tend to be written in eight-syllable quartets, with assonance in the first and third verses. (by Wikipedia)


Alternate frontcover

And this is a rare single, recorded by the house band (a quartett) of a restaurant in Madrid called “Casa de Aragon”

And we hear a lot of this tradtional Jota Dance songs … enjoy this beatiful music !


01 Jota De Albalate (Tradicional) 3.07
02. Seguidillas De Lecinena (Barrenechea) 1.37
03. Bolero De Caspe (Larregla) 2.10
04. Jotas De Picadillo (Tradicional) 3.09
05. Jotas De Estilo (Tradicional) 3.08

All songs were arranged by A. L. Merinero